S-Space College of Humanities (인문대학) Center for East Asian Studies (동아문화연구소) Journal of S.N.U. Institute for Asian Studies (동아문화) 동아문화 Volume 14 (1977)
前漢列候의 性格 一 郡縣支配下에서 封建制의 -變狼 一
The Marquises in the Former Han Dynasty 一A Transformation of the Feng-chien in the Chun-hsien Rule一
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 인문대학 동아문화연구소
- 동아문화, Vol.14, pp. 187-242
- The purpose of this paper is to analyze the political and social status of the marquises in the Former Han Dynasty, hoping to understand why and how the Feng-chien system destined to be abolished under the Chun-hsien rule was widely re-installed with the rise of the Former Han Dynasty. For this study, a particular attention will be paid to the political and ideological background of the enfeoffment of the marquises, their substantial feudal privileges and the policy of the central government toward them.
The basic reason for the re-installment of the Feng-chien system lies 'in general, in the fact that Kao-tsu could succeed only through the support and the cooperation with the competing powers, and he had to share the power with them. But the enfeoffment of the marquises, sharing of the power with his personal followers, was done by the principle of the Ren-hsia spirit which has been pointed out as a governing rule in the personal togetherness at that times. The request of the followers to share the power according to the Ren-hsia spirit in the form of Feng-chien could be justified by the well accepted political idea that the Feng-chien system is desirable to prevent the monopoly of power by one man.
The maruis was given a whole Hsien (about 10,000 square li) as the fief, except the marquis of a Hsiang, and this is based on the idea that the maximum size of the fief should be no more than 10,000 square li. The marquises had the right to levy the tax and coryee on the people in the marquisate, though the poll tax and a part of the labor service were reserved to the central goverment. Although he had his own courtiers appointed by himself, the administrators of the marquisate were not his appointees. The marquisate was administratively subordinate to the Chun as the Hsien was. Therefore the marquises could not share the power with the emperor substantially, though they were rewarded with economically. It had been possible for the marquises to play an active role in the politics by becoming a high ranking officials or attending the court conference. However, along with an edict of Wenti which confines the residence of the marquises within the fief, most of the marquises could not have a chance to join the power structure of the empire. Furthermore, under the reign of Ching-ti and Wen-ti
the marquises were deprived of the right of imposing the corvee and appointing some of his courtiers, and that the size of the courtiers was
The policy of the Han government toward marquises was very harsh, and it tried to deprive them of their feudal status whenever possible. The inheritance of the marquisate was strictly regulated, only from father to son posthumously, and when the marquis is murdered his son can not succeed him. All the behaviors of the marquises judged being against the law, regardless of their degree, could cause the abolition of their marquisate. Many lost their feudal status even by violating a trifle etiquette of moral virtues.
Lastly Author claims 主爵都尉 was firstly appointed to control the marquises more tightly in 145 BC. and from 101 B.C. on they had been under the control of 大鴻臨 and 丞相史， the former with the ceremonial matters and tee latter with the criminal cases.